Belmont Pool Closed; Men’s Pac 12 Championships Likely to Move Again

The historic Belmont Olympic Pool in Long Beach, California has been closed for the second-straight year, which means another likely reroute of the 2012 Pac 12 Championships meet.

On Thursday, January 10th, the City of Long Beach closed the pool indefinitely after a structural analysis found that the pool was “seismically unsafe,” meaning that even a moderate earthquake would cause severe damage to the facility.

The indoor pool is now closed temporarily for at least three weeks, meaning that the March 6th-9th Pac 12 Men’s Championship meet is in serious danger. After a three week closure, only affecting Belmont’s indoor course, the city will decide what the future of the facility will be in both the near-term or short-term.

This is the second-straight year that has seen a Belmont closure affect the Pac-12 Championship meet. Last year, the event was moved to East Los Angeles College, which while indoors and another mecca of the sport in California, upset some swim fans as it’s two boxed-in 25-yard courses, as compared to the behemoth 50-yard, bulkhead pools that fans have become accustomed to for big meets.

Those within the conference have hinted that UCLA, Stanford, and Arizona State are the front-runners to take over the new hosting, and that Federal Way is probably not an option, once again, because of scheduling conflicts, though there’s a chance of shifting the meet schedule to a different date and having it there. We reached out to the Pac 12 Conference for an official statement, but as of yet have not received a response. A conference call is scheduled for later this week to make the final decision.

The full statement from the City of Long Beach about the closure is below.

The Belmont Pool will be temporarily closed, effective today, due to a draft structural analysis that concludes the facility is seismically unsafe in the event of a moderate earthquake.

The City is acting in an abundance of caution for patrons and staff while City engineers review the draft analysis and inspect the facility to confirm the extent of its structural safety.

The temporary closure is expected to last approximately three weeks, and will only affect the indoor pool facility. After the review and inspections are complete,  a decision will be made to reopen or keep the pool closed. The outdoor pools, locker rooms, and adjacent La Palapa Del-Mar restaurant will remain open at this time.

City staff is working with the aquatics community to minimize disruptions and help to identify alternative options and facilities.

The seismic issue recently came to light as a result of the analysis currently underway related to the revitalization plan for the entire pool complex, which opened in August 1968. The City Council authorized staff to develop options to modernize the existing pool complex.

Within 30 days, City staff will present the City Council with long-term revitalization options that may include temporary solutions to restore pool access.

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Why would the Pac-12 want to “reward” Federal Way by giving them the Mens’ meet when there isn’t a mens’ college team within miles from WA? Let’s keep the meet in the “true” Pac-12 by allowing a Pac-12 team who actually HAS a mens’ team the opportunity to make some $$$ from the competition. Same reason why they should never let UCLA have it either, but of course this is the Pac-12/NCAA where “no common sense” reigns supreme!


The Pac-12 has alternated between Federal Way and Belmont for years. This year the women are at Federal Way along with both men and women’s diving. Pac-12 schools alternated being the host for the event even thought it is held in Federal Way. Federal Way does not have a connection with University of Washingtonb… it is owned and operated by King County… Pac-12 has made a commitment to have their championship meets (all sports) at world class facilities on the west coast.
The Pac-12 Basketball Championships is being held at the MGM in Las Vegas… again there is not a connection to any university.


Right on.


Just because the PAC 12 has made mistakes in the past and has awarded University of Washington ie Federal Way with the Pac 12 meet dosent mean they should continue this folly.
The UW is spending HUGE quan on their beloved football field and good for them but you would think they would break off a few million of hundreds of millions that have been are are being spent for a pool and possible even have a swim team


Make $$$ from the competition? Have you been to this meet? Only parents and alums in the stands and local age group and senior swimmers timing on deck. At least for now; this meet needs to happen in a place where time standards can be achieved, period. The pool rent and other costs are not recovered by the host regardless of location. Local clubs need to miss one workout and go to this meet, pay admission, and be fans for a day. One full day, as a Team. Prelims and finals. Even if only on Saturday. Coaches: give up one Saturday and let your swimmers be inspired. SoCal Teams have had the opportunity to do this for years on end… Read more »


Um, yeah, and I realize it’s not big dollars (this ain’t football, and almost no swimming events make any $$) but it is something. FYI I have taken some SoCal age groupers to this meet, so some of us do “get it” and try to support where we can, but really both the Pac-12 and NCAA make it really tough to get excited about. Let’s face it folks, college mens’ swimming (and to a lesser degree womens’ too) is kind of a joke. Nobody else in the world swims SCY (only as a novelty and not very often) and the only time anyone cares about swimming is in the Olympic years (and newsflash, the times that count for that are… Read more »


I am in a little late on this but University of Washington closed it D-1 swimming program to save about 1million bucks. Within 4 years they are spending 250 million to RENOVATE their football stadium. No thought to restarting the swimming program
Seriously is there no way that the collective PAC 12 swimming community can approach the PAC 12 and request that a portion of the new found TV $$ go to schools who support the olympic sports. If we do not find a way to have a collective voice there will come a day that its only football and basketball.


Stanford’s pool is incredible of course it should be there.


All conference and championships meets have to be held in indoor facilities


Than why are UCLA, ASU, and Stanford being considered? It looks like there might be some rule bending to accommodate the late reschedule




In early March, Tempe/ASU 75 Hi – 44 Lo, Palo Alto/Stanford 64 Hi, 44 Lo… Hoping for warmer weather of Arizona that time of year…

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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